Theory is an important part of contemporary art. After an introductory programme in the first year, the theoretical curriculum consists of eight elective courses in the second and third year, and an artistic research project in the final graduating year. By immersing yourself in art theory, including aspects of history, psychology, sociology, political science and philosophy, you will broaden your mind set and reinforce your critical thinking skills. The theory lessons will challenge you to investigate your work and discover your place in the world as an artist.


Nils van Beek

Clare Butcher

Anik Fournier

Laura van Grinsven

Andree van de Kerckhove

What is art? What does an artist do? What is the role of an artist in our society? These are the questions underlying ThINK. Together with students of the entire Art & Design faculty, students are introduced to major concepts, figures, and works that play a role in the understanding of art today.

Second and third year: Theory blocks
After the Think introduction year, each semester of your second and third year you can choose between eight different theory blocks, depending on your field of interest: ‘art and criticism’, ‘the Self and the Other’, ‘text and image’, ‘new materialisms’, ‘culture clash’, ‘inspiration and interpretation’, ‘the contemporary’, and ‘autonomy and participation’.

Graduating year: Artistic Research
In your graduation year you will undertake an artistic research that will be in close dialogue with your own work. The research is both discursive and artistic in form and is guided by a theory teacher together with the student’s tutor.

In the first year, you will also have the opportunity to apply for admission to the Honours Programme, which is supplementary to the regular courses of your own Bachelor’s programme. For more information see (Honours programme: “theory & research”)

ArtEZ Studium Generale organises inspiring programmes full of workshops, lectures, discussions, art and science for both students and professionals. These are days filled with stimulating exchanges and special crossovers.